Jewish magazine exposes New Yorker journalist's fake Dylan quotes

By Jennifer Lipman, July 31, 2012
Bob Dylan

Bob Dylan

An acclaimed journalist for the New Yorker magazine has resigned in disgrace after a Jewish magazine exposed how he fabricated quotes from musician Bob Dylan.

Jonah Lehrer announced his departure on Monday evening in the wake of a piece published by Tablet magazine that revealed how he had lied about the source of direct "quotes" from the artist in his book "Imagine". The book has now been recalled and the publisher has suspended sales of the e-edition.

Michael Moynihan, the writer who questioned him about the quotes, found out that Mr Lehrer had not spoken to the singer's manager Jeff Rosen, and that the "Dylan quotes" were entirely fake.

It is the second time Mr Lehrer, a bestselling neuroscience writer, has been involved in a scandal over his writing. In June, shortly after he was hired by the New Yorker, it emerged that he had recycled old work in a new post for the magazine's website.

In his resignation statement, Mr Lehrer offered an apology "to everyone I have let down, especially my editors and readers.

"The lies are over now. I understand the gravity of my position," he said. I will do my best to correct the record and ensure that my misquotations and mistakes are fixed."

The editor of the New Yorker said he was terrifically sad about what had happened, but said it was key not to compromise "the integrity of what we publish and what we stand for".

Last updated: 10:00am, July 31 2012